Paper #1

Length: 5-6 pages Format: Format: Double-spaced, 1-inch margins, numbered pages, 12-point (Times New Roman, Arial, or Garamond) font. Header with the following information: name, course #, my name, date- double spaced Title centered over text PLEASE REFER to GENERAL PAPER GUIDELINES included in WEEK 4 Texts: Two short stories from the syllabus (see paper topics below). Topics: Juxtaposition: What do these stories have in common? How are they different? Analyze these similarities and differences and consider how each author uses/takes advantage of literary elements to meet their intent and goals. Also, you should consider how the texts you’ve chosen to work with “speak” to each other in a way that will help you explore and develop the key concepts in your essay. Be sure to use textual evidence to support your ideas, and avoid simple summarization of each text. Choose 1 topic: 1. Both The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven and Fiesta are stories dealing with cultural influences. These influences can be seen as either empowering or constraining, depending upon the situation. Each protagonist is seen both in and out of their respective “familiar” environments. How do Alexie and Díaz use the narrative technique of dialogue to reflect each protagonist’s anxiety and/or internal conflict? In addition to each writer’s use of dialogue, how do other formal literary elements (setting, tone, exposition and so on) evident in The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven and Fiesta tell the reader about what it means to be part of another culture in America? 2. William Faulkner’s A Rose for Emily and Flannery O’Connor’s A Good Man is Hard to Find are examples of the Southern Gothic genre, and can be viewed as traditional classic tragedy- i.e. an unavoidable fall in the protagonist’s fortunes. Juxtaposing these two stories, offer an exploration of each story’s tragedy: consider the plot structure of each and, then, each writer’s artistic intent. Identify additional formal literary elements that Faulkner and O’Connor use to  supplement both their respective plot structures and the classic tragic theme. For example, you may want to consider character as a key concept. How do Faulkner and O’Connor flesh-out and make their characters real, and how do these characters inform each tragedy? Are these characters misunderstood and stereotyped, or do they have a larger, perhaps ironic significance? 3. Dennis Lehane, when speaking about the writing of Until Gwen, has stated I realized that the big question for me was: Why was I writing in the second person, which is a very strange point of view to do? Gradually, I realized that the story was about a guy’s search for his own identity, so the second person was a wonderful way to keep his name off the page—because he doesn’t really know his name. We don’t learn his name until he remembers Gwen saying it, in the past. Do you agree that it is the appropriate point of view for this story? Choose another short story that we have read, identify from what point of view it is being told, and state whether or not you think it is the “appropriate” voice for the story. In this way, you can compare and contrast the literary device of point of view with respect to how each writer has used it to reflect the protagonist’s conflict. In addition to each writer’s use of point of view, what other formal literary elements (plot ordering, setting, tone, dialogue, exposition and so on) are necessary to the story, and do some of these elements seem particularly important of effective with a particular point of view (i.e. 1st or 3rd person)? 4. Analyze Sammy’s character from John Updike’s A&P. Consider his background, his attitudes, his values, and his interactions with the customers and the girls. Compare and contrast his character with that of the narrator in The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven. For example, we know about the tastes and backgrounds of both of these characters; how is this information vital to each story’s development?